tv The Rachel Maddow Show MSNBC September 29, 2011 9:00pm-10:00pm EDT
>> jeanne mansfield, thank you very much for joining us tonight. thank you very much for telling your story. >> yeah, thank you. >> you can have the last word online at my blog. "the rachel maddow show" is up next. >> i'm glad you got that interview. thank you for staying with us for the next hour. quick visual test. you ready? on what is this a picture of? look closely. is this a picture of a vase or two faces staring at each other? which one do you see? what do you see here? do you see a little cartoony saxophone player guy with a big nose? or do you see a young woman's face? which one do you see? i can only see the images in white when i squint at these things. i don't know that means.
this an artsy drawing of a man's face with big eyes or is this the word liar written in curses ive if you look at it on the diagonal. this drove our segment producer nuts today. he can only see the old woman in this image. the old woman. he can see. the young woman, however, he does not believe me it's there. can you see the young woman or just the old woman? how did when we put it next to the other version of the young woman, does that help? mike says he still can't see it with that. here's another one. this is actually a video. >> i hear all this, you know, this is class warfare, whatever. no. there is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. nobody. you built a factory out there. good for you. but i want to be clear. you moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. you hired workers, the rest of us paid to educate.
you all were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for. you didn't have to worry that bands would come and seize everything at your factory and hire someone to protect against us because of the work the rest of us did. now, look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific or a great idea. god bless. keep a big hunk of it. but part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along. >> you have seen that video of massachusetts democratic senate candidate elizabeth warren on this show before. undoubtedly you've seen it a bunch of times on the internet before as well. i just today had a friend's mom send it to me in this tiny, tiny, tiny, inspirational form. elizabeth warren is one of the
nation's most effective communicators on economic issues and the economic interests of the middle class. that video of her, that clip of her using that skill, making that argument in whoever's living room she was in while campaigning for the u.s. senate in massachusetts, that clip, it's like the economic populist version of dramatic chipmunk. ♪ >> never gets old! god, i love that. in the republican mind, however, that clip of elizabeth warren in that living room is not just a viral video sensation. in the republican mind this year, that clip of elizabeth warren making that case you just heard her make, in the republican mind, that elizabeth warren clip is the same thing as this. sure, some people see a vase but it's just as likely that you will see this picture as two faces. sure, some people see the young lady, but people like mike can't see the young lady at all, they can only see the old lady. after that clich elizabeth
warren explaining the we're all in this together, after that clip got people standing up and applausing their e-mail and cheering at their tv and making files like this, republicans also started circulating that clip. but republicans' idea is that people would see this clip, hear this message as articulated by elizabeth warren and horrified by it. elizabeth warren puts those villainous job creators in their place, says "the daily caller ". run of the mill demagoguery from elizabeth warren, says "the boston herald". >> those people who start those companies and those factors are creating jobs. i mean, aren't they giving back to the community by creating jobs first? >> there's nothing in what she says that makes that case. >> fox news has been playing it over and over and over again. the right seems to think people hearing elizabeth warren talk about the middle class and talk about fairness in the american
economy, that will somehow hurt her. might even hurt the whole democratic cause. now, even the republican senator who elizabeth warren is trying to unseat in massachusetts, he is sending around that video of her as a fund-raising thing. scott brown's campaign saying, quote, elizabeth warren and her inflammatory rhetoric will divide our country and our common wealth. because nothing divides like a we're all in this together economic message. one of these things is not like the other. republicans are banking on people being turned off by a pro-middle class economic fairness message. maybe rush limbaugh and boston herald and scott brown are turned off but the elizabeth warren thing is not so much a vase versus faces thing. elizabeth warren's message, if you look at the polling, is much more like dramatic chipmunk. everybody is into it.
the buffett tax idea is polling at 73%. it's hard to demogog a message that popular. but in the republican mind they think they can. the progressive change campaign committee put out a big message they already raised $375,000 for elizabeth warren's senate race in massachusetts. while that is exciting news for warren supporters, if you take the big picture view of this, this announcement is sort of the financial equivalent of damming with faint praise because here's the big picture. in total, liberal activists say they have raised about $915,000 for elizabeth warren in context against what scott brown has raised. there's elizabeth warren's known money on the left there, in the blue bar. and then -- actually, you know, the bar looks like it goes off the top of the screen. i think we have to pull back a little more here. can we pull back? yeah. i guess we have to pull back a little bit more. a little bit -- okay. still just runs off the top of
the screen. pull one more out. can we -- yeah, there we go. all right. see, the problem with getting the graph to scale here is that you can't even really see the elizabeth warren money on here when you pull back to see all of scott brown's money. maybe if we do it as a pie chart instead. yeah, there we go. see, this is elizabeth warren's known money as compared to scott brown's money. see, it's that tiny, tiny little blue sliver. why does scott brown have this much money? why does he have rocky mountain lie, light cigars with your furniture, cash bundles lying around? he has it because of wall street. scott brown ranks number one right now in contributions, campaign kricks from hedge funds as well as the venture capital industry. scott brown has taken the second most from private equity and securities and investment industry. scott brown ran for senate as the normal guy who drives a
truck, right? at this point scott brown is essentially a hedge fund who drives a truck. long we are talking big picture here, the very big picture, the globally big picture, is this. when wall street imploded at the end of the bush presidency and our financial system collapsed because of its own malfee sans because wall street made themselves rich playing insane clown casino with other people's money, when that came crashing down, we were able to keep this country out of great depression. but not out of the massive recession from which we have not yet recovered. and the way we kept ourselves out of that great depression was by rescuing wall street. which means that we do still have a financial system in this country. we do still have a banking is system. it didn't exactly fix the problem that got us there in the first place, nor did it stop the repercussions of that collapse that we barely lived through in 2008. in the big, big global picture right now is the next rep repercussion, the next thing about to collapse is europe.
europe is a third of the world's entire economy. right now european banks and european countries are going through the same sort of trauma we went through in 2008. they don't know they'll be able to save their financial system or if there's going to be uncontrolled defaulting and chaos. the way we saved our banking system, of course, was t.a.r.p., the bank bailout. that did save us from going into a great depression and kept us out of default but kept the wall street banks get away effectively scot-free. they literally never paid for what they did to the country. those banks are back stronger than ever behaving just like they did before and making tons of money, which is why almost all of the t.a.r.p. money has been paid back because wall street is doing so great right now. one of the things they're doing is that they are pouring money into the american political system to make sure the elizabeth warrens of the world never get anywhere. their investment in scott brown last time around, after all, paid off in a scott brown brokered deal to keep the banks from paying for the implementation of wall street reform. skat brown intervened to make
sure taxpayers would have to pay that instead of the poor, poor, poor banks. he saved them $19 billion. goldman sachs, which has a starring role in the european collapse because greece will be the first country to go, and he's paid goldman sachs to hide their debt problem, goldman sachs spent over 1 million bucks lobbying in the last quarter alone against wall street reform. wall street is flowing hand over fist to the presidential campaign of romney, promising a wholesale repeal of any major regulation of wall street that's been implemented since the financial collapse. so, in this big picture, in this environment, frankly, some sort of bottom-up, indefinite expression of anger at wall street, anger at their control over our lives and our country now, is probably a little overdue. the occupy wall street protests in new york have been going on for 12 days now. most of the media attention they have received thus far has been
because of violent and rather outrageous police tactics used against the protesters. but the reason this movement is growing, and in fact spreading to other american cities now, is not because of some message about police tactics toward protesters. that is not the larger point. the larger point is the basic message, the basic point about who caused the mess the country is in right now. who has figured out how to benefit from it and who is stopping us from fixing it. again, attention to that feels a little overdue. joining us is chris hayes, host of the new and already great "up with chris hayes" airing weekend mornings at msnbc and editor-at-large of "the nation." i've never seen your sailor shirt before. it's adorable. >> thank you. adorable is what i was going for. >> fetching, is that better? >> yes. >> whether most people agree with direct action as a political action, something you're inclined for or not, do you think the occupy wall street folks are tapping into what is in effect a very main stream
sentiment that hasn't had a political outlet yet? >> that's exactly what they're doing. i think the part of the cognitive dissidence people first feel, i saw it myself, is the disconnect between the way we couch these issues in main stream american politics, middle class, et cetera, and the image of direct action, of kids sleeping in sleeping bags in a park. those two have somehow become des per rat in our imagination because we have this political discourse between middle class and main street is getting screwed. we have lost in some ways the conception of politics outside of those channels. and i think what is exciting about occupy wall street and what has captured people's imagination is the feeling the normal channels don't feel like they're working. that i think is really the thing that is most powerful about it. the thing people share is that people feel like the normal challenges -- the normal channels of sort of feedback into the system aren't working. their voices are being ignored. and that they don't have control.
even if this is a kree da core, unfocused, it feels like some sort of voice in the wilderness saying, look, everything is broken right now. i feel that way every day waking up and coming into this building to go read the internet or talk to people as a reporter. things are not working. just the basic troouth of that d basic unfairness in the way things are not working is so essential to our experience of americans at this moment that i think there's something powerful about it. >> and within the system, i mean, most of what we cover as political news is actors by people who are within the political system. right now, one of the two parties in the form of president obama and this high profile senate candidate, elizabeth warren, are trying to say the system shouldn't be so broken. the system can be fixed so that it does address main stream americans concerns and not just the concerns of the people who are doing great right now and the people who screwed us over, i.e., wall treat. is the message itself important that they are even trying or do
they need to be offering something very kog concrete that will make a difference in people's lives in order to connect people back to the political system? >> i go really back and forth on this. at a certain level that message is diluted because we know barack obama raises tons of money from wall street. nancy pelosi, god bless her, raises a lot of money from wall street. they have to. >> that's where all the money is. >> the point you made in the opening is a really important one. the very per verse and vicious cycle of the desperate recovers we have. they are relying more on wall street which is perversion. i think it's diluted by the campaign finance system we have where it's hard for people to credibly believe the distinction as great as they want it to be and partially a part of the fact that republicans are able to subvert and destroy the initiatives that would help working class people. >> what's going do happen with
this protest movement? it's starting to spread around the country. it is starting to -- people are starting to move beyond, i think, the frustration, the perceived, i think, imp tense of direction action politic which is just a -- which is -- that as a political tactic as a class, as it doesn't go away and spreads to other movements, do you see the political movement on the left embracing it or does it stay outside the system? >> there was a report today about a bunch of new york city unions going to join the protest on wednesday, which was a major step. transit workers, militant union, they had a strike in new york a few years ago. i do think people understand that even if they felt some misgivings at the beginning or these -- i don't know what the demand are. i understand those. i mean, i have those same feelings in the beginning. there is some genuine energy here. i was having this conversation with somebody else, what else is working? honestly, look around you, what else is working? you know, people feel like, well, let's take a fire in
something else. >> direct action for all the frustration it causes very often impets the goods. really does in a way that doesn't get much credit. chris hayes, editor of the new weekend morning show "up with chris hayes" which is great and everybody should watch it. congratulations thus far. thanks for being here. there are events in history about which one can know all of one's life and struggle to comprehend. a man walked on the moon, for example. man on the moon. up there. you know, like, wow. america's unofficial documentary laureate ken burns gob smacker, america once outlawed booze for a really long time. and then we unoutlawed it and survived to tell the tell. ken burns is here tonight. 're as and here's what we did today: supported nearly 3 million steady jobs across our country... ... scientists, technicians, engineers, machinists...
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should gay marriage be banned in north carolina? >> voters will decide if a ban should go into the constitutional 124. >> north carolina is a very sexy destination for transplants. just not same sexy. at least not yet. today the state senate followed suit and the end result, you and i will make the final decision inside the voting booth next may. >> that may be the year's nominee for most unexpected moment in a local news lead-in. fox affiliate in charlotte,
north carolina, lamenting while north carolina is undeniably sexy, it is not necessarily same sexy. >> on local news. in charlotte north carolina. gay couples marrying is just as it is in 44 but same sex maej is nothing more than illegal in north carolina. it's just against state law. not unconstitutional. the only state in the south that has not amended state constitution to ban ga marriage over and above the ban. after the big conservative sweep of the 2010 mid term elections meant republicans taking control of the legislature for more than a century. the new republican majority in north carolina's legislature decided this was the year they would add to their existing legal ban on same-sex marriage by trying to delete
constitutionally -- citizens of north carolina will be asked during next year's primary to vote on whether or not to change their state's constitution. to doubly constitutionally extra ban same-sex marriage that's already banned. we don't know what north carolina voters will decide on this issue but more than two dozen other states have put gay marriage to a vote and they have voted to amend their constitution to ban gay maerng. when we vote on minority rights of many, if not all stripes in this country, we tend to vote no. they are not supposed to be up for a vote. inallenable, or as the declaration of independence it, unallenable. among them, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, even if your particular brand of happiness is same sexiness
happiness. in mississippi a different right will be up for vote, to change the constitution as a person starting at the moment of fertilization. obviously, the intended effect of this legislation is about abortion. it's to take away women's right to have an abortion. again, when you vote on rights, anywhere in this country, generally you get reminded of why there is a need to call some things rights to protect those rights from a vote. particularly in mississippi, when you poll mississippiens on social issues you get fairly predictable answers. in 2004, for example, mississippi voted on an amendment, their state constitution to ban gay marriage with 86% of the vote. it won in every single county in mississippi. in 20 01 mississippi voters were sk asked if they wanted a new flag, one without a confederate emblem. they voted to keep the confederate flag by more than 2
to 1. they were polled on whether interracial marriage should be legal. this is in 2011. republicans say interracial marriage should be illegal. 46%. another 14% say they are not sure. so, if you ask mississippi republicans about interracial marriage in 2011, 60% of them think interracial marriage should be illegal or they're not sure. only 40% -- think it definitely should be legal. this is the political environment in which abortion rights are going to be voted on in november in mississippi. but here's the thing. it is not necessarily a sure thing that this will pass in mississippi. not necessarily. here's why. here again is that language they'll be voting on. changing the state constitution to define a person as starting at the moment of fertilization, cloning or the functional equivalent thereof. the ways by the way control
works is sometimes they stop the fertilization of an egg. sometimes they stop the implantation of an egg that has been fertilized. if a fertilized egg is now going to be a person in mississippi, does that mean using birth control is going to be committing murder in mississippi? birth control is going to be illegal? the folks behind this personhood bill have said on their website, yes, they are, in fact, opposed to certain forms of birth control including the forms that statistically speaking, you probably use. the folks behind the proposed by the way control ban and total abortion ban, they have edited the faq section since we took this screen shot two weeks ago. now they're more careful about. . they just say, well, we don't advocate the use of contraceptives. maybe somebody got to them with the numbers on popularity of birth control. they are adopting the message. maybe it was the comparatively
smaller group that has campaigned against this personhood amendment in mississippi. they're called mississippians for healthy families. they they put the health and safety of mississippians and family at risk. the number one potential consequence they list is that it could ban commonly used forms of contraception which is very well could. ban abortion folks in mississippi are trying to get people to stop talking about the banned birth control part of their campaign. it does remain a very aggressive campaign. they're going all out for their kickoff banquet. they got fox tv news personality mike huckabee to be their key note speaker and got the wife of football player brett favre to sign on. the people behind the mississippi birth control ban and total abortion ban, they're also the people who campaigned earlier this year using something called the conceived in rape tour. the message for their proposal, for, not against, is that they
would be forcing women who have been raped to bear the child of their rapist against the will of the rape victim. that is the case they are making for the personhood bill in mississippi. the personhood bill is not native to mississippi. the folks who helped get this measure on the ballot have efforts under way to get it on the ballot in all 50 state. the only place to get it on the ballot is colorado. americans generally love to vote against rights, particularly controversial rights, this thing tanked when they got it on the ballot in colorado. colorado voted this thing down 73 to 27 back in 2008. then they got it back on the ballot in 2010 and colorado rejected it again, 27-29. remember, they're going after all 50 state. the quest for conservative government control of every uterus and fallopian tube continues. the same antibirth control activists and anti-abortion activists in mississippi and colorado say they are gathering signatures to put it on the
ballot in ohio. in never new england last year they tried to get it on the ballot but they couldn't get enough signatures. another group is trying again in nevada this year. alaska this year the state rejected a petition to get a personhood style ban before signatures were collected because the state's republican attorney state general found it unstugal. in iowa and maryland conserve ties tried to get the birth control and abortion ban on the ballot but they didn't get anywhere with it yet. in montana a plan to put the birth control and abortion ban up for a vote actually passed the montana house but then didn't come up for a vote in the senate. in a country that loves to vote against each other's rights, anti-abortion activists trying to ban the pill, these personhood bills? so far they're not flying. they're not flying anywhere. in november we'll find out if that anywhere extends also to mississippi. and tonight america's preeminent
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and then exciting new music seemed to capture it all. prohibition had been enacted to forestall change, to put an end to alcoholism, to safeguard the american family, to re-establish the moral supremacy of small town protestant american. instead, it helped fuel the very transformation its champions feared. somehow the same country that had banned the sale of alcohol had become the biggest importer of cocktail shakers in the world. >> as host of the only cable news show in the history of anything, to have its own branded cocktail shakers, i am delighted to welcome to the show the great ken burns, america's documentarian. he's here for "the interview" about his new documentary on prohibition.
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speak easy, where there was no law enforced of any kind, became different than if you have a little jazz band and somebody's -- you know, they play the charleston, you'll have men and women together, there's a real liberation for women and liberation of behavior that takes place then. he said, if he can drink, i can drink, too. that wouldn't have happened before prohibition. >> joining us is the great ken burn. his new documentary "prohibition" airs this sunday on pbs. it's so great to have you. >> it's my pleasure. thanks for having me. >> you know from our off-line relationship that i'm obsessed with kerry nation. and prohibition, the idea there could be a successful political movement around their supposed superioralty and everybody else having bad morality.
how do you you win a majority fight when that's your basic message? >> you start off with a real social problem, which is drunkenness, alcoholism we call it today, and we were drinking five, six times more then than now. people would drink it for breakfast like john adams and it was a big social problem. people wanted it. it was agency for women outside the home they could talk about it. but then it got hijacked by this incredible organization called the antisaloon league. they are the single greatest lobbying organization in the history of the united states. they make the nra look like they're still in short pants and need a lesson or two. it's a phenomenal thing. we're not told about that. we're distracted by flappers dancing on table tops. we're distracted by an interest in the gangsters. in fact, this was the first culture war. they amassed this strange alliance so by the time prohibition went into effect there were progressives as well as conservatives supporting it for all sorts of reason. the naacp and the klu klux klan,
and they all saw banning alcohol would be this panacea, this magic bullet that would cure all of society's ills. of course, it wasn't -- billy sunderland said f we pass this thing, hell will forever be for rent. in fact, they were lining up sro to go into hell as a result of that. i mean, i think it was always prohibition for somebody else. as our film begins with this great quote from mark twain, nothing so needs reforming as other people's habits. >> there are two sides. one interesting thing is nobody is standing up for the bad -- the people of bad morals, right? >> right. >> people who want to drink in as powerful as ways as the moralist, the dries. there are, of course, brewer soeshgs who are trying to make a case for their own industry. it's clearly self-interested case.
>> that's the problem when you have moral authority on one side saying, let's improve society, let's get rid of the evil drink, the evil saloons and you're saying, i kind of like to take a drink now and then. this is my business. don't take it away from me. for a while the brewers held their own because upwards of 70% of internal federal revenues to uncle sam came from taxing beer and liquor. so, the conservative antisaloon league aligns themselves with progressive movement, and then all of a sudden you disconnected uncle sam from the booze industry. and then if you got the convenience of world war i where all germans are enemy, beer equals treason, we change the name of sauerkraut to liberty cabbage. sound familiar? >> i was going to say, freedom toast. i can feel it right now. >> it's just -- it's what happens. and tumbles in. we have it, wake up and we wake up with a hangover. most people think, well, i'll still have my beer and wine.
i'll be able to do that. the draconian law passed to administer the amendment was defining alcohol is one-half of 1% and then it had other places where there were loopholes that gave the opportunities to criminals who were disorganized until prohibition to become organized and create the worst unintended consequence of this all, which is the existence of organized crime. >> on the issue of organized crime, i mean, i feel like when we talk about prohibition now -- there has been more talk about it recently because i think there's been a cocktail renaissance and a popular time in american history. >> it's fashion. >> everybody tries to make prohibition of alcohol an alagory but if you take on its own terms instead of making it a metaphor for something else, are there thing in our culture and politics that are direct legacies of prohibition itself? i mean, you mentioned organized crime. >> i think organized crime is the biggest and loudest one. i think female alcoholism, because women, as you said in your lead, didn't drink in
saloons. all of a sudden they were certainly drinking in speak easy and alcohol consumption in women went up significantly in the course of it and stayed up. these are the pernicious legacies. the good thing that came out of this is that we have a healthy suspicion of that group that's saying, hey, i've got the solution again. if you just do this blankety-blank amendment, everything will be all right. the sun will shine and everything will be fine again. we don't do that because we know, we've got this built-in memory of this time. but if you think about prohibition, it just -- it echoes with everything single issue campaigns, demonization of immigrants, loss of civil discoercion, smear campaigns and presidential election cycles, a whole group of people who feel like they've lost control of their country and want to take it back. warrantless wiretaps. what's the correct role of government? i mean, stop me. you can go on and on and on. this is not a rehearsal. this is human nature. we are imbedded in us this
impulse to control. but in our country in which most amendments, all amendments are expanding human freedom, besides the ones that tinker with the mechanics of the constitution, how long you can serve, you know, when you take office, this one is the only one that narrowed it, that restricted it and the only one, thank goodness, that got repealed. i mean, the good news is, 13 years, almost 14 years sounds like a long time. everyone was stunned as how quickly the ratification of prohibition came in. but it went out even faster. the repeal was just even more swift because we just had run up against the inherent hypocrisy of people who believed in absolute moral certainty. it may have worked at the edges in the single issue wedge campaign because that's the purpose of a wedge issue s to divide. once it's practically applied, then the emperor has no clothes anymore. it's the poor and the working class that are -- and the recent immigrants that are being unfairly targeted. the rich can stockpile their own booze and have it for as long as
they want. people are being killed with shootouts with federal agents, innocent passers by. organized crime and all the corruption that comes from that. the president of the united states, warren g. harding, who's for it, nevertheless has a boot leger coming to the white house. you know, at the end, the combination of the depression and hypocrisy we said, so why did we enthe fifth largest industry? >> it's such a radical social experiment to even conceive about this country but to have done it for 13 years. >> yeah. >> is astonishing. now we know more about it had you not decided to take this on. thank you for doing this documentary on this subject. i'm fascinated by it. i couldn't be happier that you've done it. i think it's great and so entertaining. thank you. >> you know, i also have to shout out, lynn novak, co-director and co-producer in this, who's been my long-time collaborator. she added an interesting dimension. this a fooef dream of 14 years
of, this is us? >> seriously. >> ken burns, director and producer of the new documentary "prohibition," the first episode airs this sunday 8 p.m. on pbs. i can personally recommend it. it's awesome. thanks very much. good luck. >> my pleasure. thank you. >> when info bunk needs debunks it's time for a trip we're america's natural gas and here's what we did today: supported nearly 3 million steady jobs across our country... ... scientists, technicians, engineers, machinists... ... adding nearly 400 billion dollars to our economy... we're at work providing power to almost a quarter of our homes and businesses... ... and giving us cleaner rides to work and school...
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we've raised this ugly unfortunate incident to the highest levels of the syrian government. we continue to call for an end to the violence and we'll continue to speak out and i think ambassador ford's courage and clarity is, you know, making the point that the united states cannot and will not stand idly by when this this kind of violence continues. >> when countries have serious disagreements over really serious issues, one of the ways countries will resolve those issues is war. we fight it out physically. if we're not going to fight it out physically, the other means by which our governments try to get our way in the world, other than by using force, is by using diplomacy. or should i say, diplomacy! in 2005 after years of conflict with the nation of syria, the bush administration got so angry with syria that they decided to call home america's ambassador. when the obama administration took over, they were no less angry with syria and had no
fewer disagreements with that country. the obama administration decided to deal with their disagreements they would send an ambassador back but we did send this man, robert ford, to be america's man in syria. and the american position toward the government in syria right now is roughly that we are against it. this summer, president obama called on the president of syria to step down saying, quote, we have consistently said that president assad must lead a democratic transition or get out of the way. he has not led. if the president says that and you're america's guy in syria, you're america's man in charge of staying in touch with president assad at a time like that, what do you do? well, if you are robert ford, america's ambassador, you defy the syria's permission to leave the capital city and you go on your own to see the
anti-government protesters where they're able to protest outside the state's capital. ambassador ford and the french ambassador went to the city of hamma, the protesters grieg the ambassadors with rose petals. the three trims there are olive branches, has in the metaphor. after ambassador ford took that visit in july, a major focal point of the anti-government protest movement, he got slapped with travel restrictions from the syrian government. then regime loyalists in the capital attacked the american and french embassies. and then "the new york times" reporting that robert ford's house was attacked several blocks away. how does robert ford respond to all this? he leaves damascus again and goes to another city central to the anti-protest government movement. he traveled to jasum and attended the funeral of a protesters that was killed.
that funeral not long after ambassador ford was there was attacked violently by syrian security forces. today when robert ford went to meet with an opposition leader in damascus, ford's convoy was physically attacked by regime loyalists. pro-government activists reportedly stoned his convoy. the a.p. saying they pelted him with eggs and tomatoes and then tried to break into the building where his meeting was being held. "the new york times" reporting that ambassador ford was essentially trapped inside that building for about 90 minutes. u.s. government officials now say that ambassador ford is fine. he's physically okay after today's attack on him. robert ford's boss, secretary of state hillary clinton, is not happy about the attack. and also she clearly understands that robert ford is not just an ambassador. he is an ambadassador. >> ambassador ford has shown admirable courage, putting himself on the line to bear witness to the situation on the ground in syria.
he is a vital advocate for the legitimate aspirations of the syrian people, now under siege by the assad regime. i encourage the united states senate to show our support for ambassador ford by confirming him as soon as possible so he can continue fully confirmed his critical and courageous work. >> oh, right, right, after all this guy's been through, after all this guy has done, after everything he's doing in syria, republicans in the united states senate have not been able to bring themselves to allow him to be confirmed. seriously? no, really? come on! [ female announcer ] so you think your kids are getting enough vegetables? maybe not.
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what's my function? true or false, republican republican candidate jon huntsman is polling so low right now that he is at risk at getting cut from the future debates. he could be locked out. is that true or is that false? false, at least for now it's false. the next debate is going to be on october 11th. that's "the washington post"/bloomberg debate in new hampshire. "the washington post" and bloomberg are not saying what the criteria are for being in their debate. but the next debate is on october 18 on cnn. and cnn's criteria for who can be in their debate, jon huntsman for most of this month was in danger of getting cut. their criteria, quote, a person must receive an average of at least 2% in at least three national polls released between
october 1th and october 16th. dave wigel has named this the gary johnson rule. keeping in mind the exacting stands of that rule, here's how jon huntsman did in the first six national polls conducted in that time frame starting september 1st. the most recent poll, 1%. trouble for jon huntsman here, right? 1% isn't enough. you need to get an average of at least 2% in at least three polls. but he has been saved by the bell. in the previous cnn poll conducted earlier in september, mr. huntsman did get the required 2%. and in the new fox news poll released just last night, he spiked and saved his average. he was up to 4% in the fox poll which means it is possible to come up with two polls that put
huntsman above the 2% cutoff. that is not exactly crack open the champagne news for the jon huntsman for president campaign. but it's not turn out the lights news for that campaign either. next up, in the 2008 presidential election, the first nominating contest was held in iowa on january 3rd right after the new year, which means we spent a full 11 months voting in order to pick a new president in '08. as weird as that was, that is the new normal. true or false, the astonishingly early start to the primary calendar in 2008 is about to happen again for 2012? is that true or is that false? true. looks like it at least. florida poised to move its presidential primary to the last day of january. the speaker of the florida statehouse saying he expects january 31st to be the date. if that happens, south carolina will move its primary date up. nevada will move up its caucus